OnePlus Nord N200 5G review: 5G budget beast


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The OnePlus Nord N200 5G should be missing features. But the phone packs in blazing 5G speed, a massive battery, NFC, and a 90Hz screen for a mere $239.99.

The Nord N200 5G sports a 6.49-inch FHD+ (1080 x 2400) display at 405ppi. In addition, buyers get a fast 90Hz display typically reserved for higher-end devices. The screen is bright enough to view in direct sunlight and colors pop during video playback.

The bottom-firing mono speaker is decent. There isn’t much differentiation between mids or lows, but it can fire very loudly is noisy areas. For audiophiles, the handset includes a handy 3.5mm headphone jack.

Inside the Nord N200 5G is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 480 5G with Adreno GPU 619. Combined with 4GB LPDDR4x RAM, the handset performs admirably for most tasks. Some applications take a bit longer to open and browsing can encounter some stutter, but performance was stable. Geekbench scores totaled to 503 for single-core and 1529 for multi-core.

The 480 5G chipset includes support for sub-6 5G. On the T-Mobile network, the N200 5G achieved speeds of up to 173.4 Mbps download and 126.1 Mbps upload in Los Angeles, super fast for streaming, gaming, or video conferencing.

The chassis yields a matte metallic finish that looks and feels more premium than it should. The sides are flanked with a power button/fingerprint reader on the right and volume buttons on the left. Above the volume buttons is the SIM/microSD card slot that can expand upon the built-in 64GB memory by up to 256GB.

The included 5,000mAh battery is awesome and makes the Nord N200 5G a minimum two-day phone. The Snapdragon 480 5G is extremely efficient and sips battery life even when streaming hours of content at a time. In addition, the phone can fast charge with the included 18W charger.

As expected for a phone in this price range, the camera setup is mediocre. The rear 13MP EIS main camera, macro lens, and monochrome lens take average to muddled photos that lack life or much color. Using the device on a trip to Paris, quick snaps looked great on the display, but a closer zoom exposes a lack of detail, shadows, and color depth. In addition, the 16MP front camera and 30FPS video functionality are both average.

Unexpectedly, the Nord N200 5G includes NFC for built-in wireless payments. It’s a great feature to have in a budget phone and absent from handsets selling in the same price range.

Using the Nord N200 5G in Paris, I found it to be a great travel phone. Data reception was good around the city using the T-Mobile international data plan. The bright display made it easy to view Google Maps in the sunlight, and the long battery life was great for consuming videos when I had to queue.

Finally, Xbox Cloud Gaming worked great on the phone. After pairing the Xbox controller to the N200 5G, I booted The Ascent and played a quick round with no disconnects.

The OnePlus Nord N200 5G is very impressive for its price point. It includes many features typically reserved for phones that sell in the $350 plus range, including a 90Hz display and NFC. The phone doesn’t do much for photography, but if the camera isn’t a deal breaker, this budget beast is more than enough to tackle most tasks.

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